A federal judge ruled on Monday that a terminally ill woman will be allowed to marry her lesbian partner before Illinois same sex marriage law goes into effect on June 1 next year.
Under U.S. District Judge Thomas Durkin’s order, the Cook County clerk will have to issue the license to Patricia Ewert and her partner Vernita Gray, who has cancer that has spread to her brain and bones. She was not expected to live until June.
Cook County Clerk David Orr, who supported the marriage equality law, said that he would comply with the judge’s order.
“My office will comply with the judge’s orders and expedite a marriage license to this couple – a service already granted to heterosexual couples in similar situations,” Orr said in a statement.
Marriage not only allows the couple to celebrate their love, but also provides protection to Ewert if Gray dies.
Ewert and Gray plan to marry next week.
Watch this video from WGN, broadcast Nov. 26, 2013.